We were the ‘no’ voters. Not because we don’t want a running track but because the location is wrong.
Why would we build a running track on the outskirts of town where we’d have to drive to and park. And park where? And then run by the highway breathing car exhaust?
Why not build it where there is a high concentration of people, with free parking and within walking distance for people and no highway traffic to pollute the lungs? VSS, Kin Race Track or any other location ‘in town’.
The location of the voted track certainly doesn’t fall within any good long-term planning concepts nor within the Healthy Communities Initiative. Is it even part of our Official Community Plan? Where did this idea come from in the first place?
The track is being built for the college students and a few runners in town, and to me, the college should pay for that, not me. I am convinced that it will be used by very few because of the location and it makes me wonder about our other current recreational facilities. Many need updating. As a good example, we have a make-shift gymnastics facility because the city has not provided the space for a proper facility.
In this “gymnastics centre,” there are about 100 people every day, six days a week. I doubt very much that we will see these numbers on the track.
And as for the vote results, they are sadly low and very close. I hope the city planners and other decision-makers will reconsider this high-price, low use ‘investment’. I would like to quote an extract from the OCP…and you will see that this ’track’ does not follow the Official Community Plan:
13.8 Support new, expanded and/or enhanced recreation facilities according to the following criteria:
a. Meets an identified need in the community
b. Increases residents’ access to recreation opportunities
c. Located within or adjacent to residential designated areas of the city
d. Facility flexibility for multi function community use
13.9 Support the continued enhancement and expansion of recreational programming offered in Vernon. Further, support efforts towards providing recreational opportunities within five minutes walking time of residential development.